In recent years, information about deodorant and the harm it may be causing has entered the mainstream, leaving many of us wondering if we should be using it at all. According to Time, the five key ingredients in deodorants that are considered toxic are parabens, aluminium, triclosan, phthalates, and fragrance. Risks associated with these ingredients include cancer, gene instability, bacterial contamination, and more.
Heather Patisaul, an associate professor of biology at North Carolina State University, explains, “When you eat something, it’s broken down by your liver and digestive system, but when you put something on your skin [like deodorant], there are times when it can enter your bloodstream without being metabolized.” In other words, wearing products containing these ingredients, such as antiperspirant spray, could affect your body more than it would if you ingested them.
If that’s a concern to you, you might be looking for other options. Here’s what you should use in place of deodorant.
You can find a lot of deodorant alternatives at home
You can find a lot of deodorant alternatives at home. Found in the kitchen, “Salt, or sodium chloride can kill many bacteria,” Dr Jason Loth told Bustle. “With a little water and application to the armpit, this can help control body odour for many people without the side effects of fragrance, aluminium, and other chemicals found in most deodorants.” Citrus is also another good option.
In your bathroom, anything that contains benzoyl peroxide will do a good job at fighting underarm bacteria. Speaking to Bustle, dermatologist Tsippora Shainhouse said your best bet is anti-acne products, particularly face wash, as they almost always contain this ingredient.
If you’re looking for a more holistic option, opt for rose water, otherwise, aromatherapist Richard Hammond suggests oils such as bergamot, blood orange, clove, and cedarwood, or florals like lavender, cypress, and geranium, as they are all antibacterial, eliminate odour, and can help prevent sweat.
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